The globalisation of markets has led to an increased demand for language translation services that support and enable all forms of communication between economic partners operating in an international environment. For example, technical documents, software systems, business documents and web sites all need to be translated into multiple languages for individual national markets, and the information changes periodically; for web sites, daily and even hourly changes are common. This paper sets out a theoretical framework that describes and encapsulates the business architectures of processes within and between separate firms used to support the delivery and management of language translation services by dynamically optimising the fit between externally generated problem complexity, from customers, and the internally generated complexity of different network configuration solutions. A case study of one of the major international translation companies is presented (thebigword) which illustrates how the framework is applied in practice. The focus of the case study is on how thebigword implement an IT-based system that acts as a platform or e-market to bring together the different participants and stakeholders including translators, translation services companies and clients in a global, smart business network. © 2009 Springer Berlin Heidelberg.